Mark 13:24

“In those days, after that time of distress, the sun will be darkened, the moon will not give her light,

the darkness of depression
blocks strong brother sun
obscures gentle sister moon
puts a basket
over a little candle

the brilliance of ecstasy
outshines the largest sun
is crazier than any full moon
shapes everything
in its own image

a depressed ecstasy
rises to fail
fails to rise
settling into habit
addicted to everything

such is clear enough now
about past patterns
it will still take awhile
to repent today
to respect tomorrow

Here is the next deeper circle of Dante’s despair, after the all too usual sufferings at the hand of those seeking power over—an age of darkness questioning and denying every trust you have placed.

Creation will appear to walk backward. The outward expansion of what we know as Universe will seem as though it were collapsing back into a Small Whimper. We will be so distant from stars they will appear to go out. That which we had set our lives by will waver; there will be no more North.

There will be no sign flickering in the dark.

Readers would do well to come to grips with Swanson’s80attempt to see this part of Mark as a “true story”:

Perhaps Mark’s story comments, with bitter irony, on the likelihood that lost and scattered Israel will ever come home. If so, a storyteller would do well to figure out how this bitter irony shapes the rest of Mark’s story, and then apply these discoveries to playing this scene.

To “play this scene” is to allow it to shape our actions and reactions to our what we find or don’t find in our everyday experience, which, holographically, is creation writ small.

When our personal dark night is found to be one shard of many lying all about, none of which can encourage another to “Watch Out!”, it is as though the sun blinked out before our expectation of its doing so. This is more than a facing of the unsurprising troubles of an abuse of power taking the little the poor have from them (under the guise of helping them become responsible) or one genocide or another on any of the continents in any year.

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